So I've got elves and dwarves relatively out of the way. Mind you, they are not finished ideas, but for now they will do.
Ok, so it's time to tackle the little races, half-orcs and anything else I might allow for players.
Half orcs are really easy to get out of the picture. They are sterile, so there is no chance of multiplying and they are either killed at birth by humans, or brought up by orcs, and than they are simply treated like orcs.
Half -orcs aarrrre out!
I have a strong objection to halflings for the same reasons as J. Maliszewski. They are just too Tolkienesque. You can call one Mustakrakish the Bloody and in the minds of players he will still be a little furry hobbit (maybe covered with blood, but that's all).
The one noteworthy attempt at changing this state of affairs was Dark Sun, but since I want my game closer to the od&d, I think introducing dinosaur riding cannibal midgets as a player race might kill the whole effort.
Halflings arrrrrreee out!
As much as I dislike halflings, I love gnomes. I find several reasons to include them in my setting:
- having kicked halflings out, I feel I need to fill the hole somehow, so that the players have what to choose from;
- they actually appear in germanic mythologies (altho mostly used as a synonym for dwarf) and don't make people think of only one piece of work like halflings;
- I like the idea of them being a magical-technical race surrounded by a shroud of secrets and I think it goes well with the idea that they are mostly illusionists;
- since they are illusionists I see no reason why they can't be famous for their thievery skills, thus replacing halflings in case someone can only play little race thieves;
- putting them into my setting gives my a safety hatch, allowing me to introduce whacky magomechanics without blowing up the setting;
Having said all that, If I want to have gnomes I need to make them mysterious, exotic and secretive. Which is fine with me. For now I have little idea about their background, hopefully I'll come up with something interesting.
Gnomes win the match!